Mysteries in the Imperial Harem: Chapter 74
Chapter 74: Shu Chuan Courtyard (Part 2)
“So it seems that winning a game of chess would equals to getting a request fulfilled. Zhen will try it too.”
The deep male voice sounded a little brisk. In addition to Ming Jian, the two persons in the pavilion stiffen. Xiao Yu recovered first and calmly got up to great Yan Hong Tian before retreating to the side and picked a white porcelain teacup to brew a come of Liu Yue for Yan Hong Tian before separating the black and white chess pieces into the different holders.
When Xiao Yu was busy clearing the chess pieces, Qing Feng finally recovered from her trance. It was not the arrival of Yan Hong Tian that made her stunned, but it was because she saw someone behind Yan Hong Tian… Ming Ze. Wasn’t he a guard in the Palace? Why would he be following Yan Hong Tian to other residences.
“Beloved Concubine look not bad today.”Bring the cup of maroon clear tea to his lips for a sip, the aroma hit him. He usually like red mugwort tea and did not think that the taste of Liu Yue was that unique. No wonder she likes it. Calm and light. Only when water was added then its characteristics would be drawn out, which was somewhat similar to her.
Qing Feng cast some doubts with her eyes and when she looked up, there was only a faint smile, “That would be something to thank the Emperor, for allowing Chenqie to rest ‘quietly’ for so long.” Seeing Yan Hong Tian seated opposite of her, Qing Feng picked up a black chess piece and played with it, “The Emperor really want to play chess with Chenqie? Whoever loses will need to allow the other to do one thing.”`
“Whatever reason not?”
After he finish speaking, Yan Hong Tian picked up a white chess piece and waited for Qing Feng to place hers down.
As Yan Hong Tian is a monarch of a country, even though he did not particularly like playing chess, he had teachers to provide pointers. Except for Lou Xi Yan, he had never lost to another. One naturally did not need to mention about Qing Feng. Qing Mo’s chess skills was world famous, and if one were to play with her own younger sister every day, how weak would her chess skills be? From the beginning both of them started off casually but as the game progresses, they were amazed with each other’s skills. Both of them were prideful persons, they did not give way at all. As the game went on, the more exciting it became.
As both of them were concentrated on pitting against one another in chess, Xiao Yu was attended by the side and Ming Ze had quietly retreated out of the pavilion. Ming Jian wanted to go over but when he saw Ming Ze’s colder than ice expression, he ultimately decided to wait till his temper simmer a little before approaching him. After all the Emperor was still here and Ming Ze still had that stubborn personality. Ming Jian sighed in his heart, its just so difficult to be an elder brother, he obviously arrange for his own good but at the end it seems that it was all his fault.
It did not matter if it was a chest match or martial arts tournament, as long one’s heart was in battle, there will be a winner. Finally, the black pieces had no where else to go. Xiao Yu mentally calculated carefully before smiling at Qing Feng, “Your Ladyship lost by one piece.”
She did not think that Yan Hong Tian’s chess skills would be that high and it made Qing Feng frustrated but she still asked frankly, “What does the Emperor want Chen Qie to do?”
What did he want her to do? Glancing at her increasingly large stomach, Yan Hong Tian found it funny. She was in already such a state, what else can she do? His eyes sweep across the beautiful scenery outside the pavilion and casually said, “Draw Zhen a painting then.”
Painting? Qing Feng thought a bit and smiled, “All right.”
Ru Yi arranges the painting tools properly and Xiao Yu was at the side preparing the ink. She had long heard that Qing Feng was both peerless in books and paintings and after that she saw the painting of the hunting ground at the Emperor’s Imperial Study. At that time when she saw it, she was scared and excited at the same time. It was a pity that she had no chance to see Qing Feng personally painting it. Since there was a chance like this today, she would not miss it.
Yan Hong Tian did not go over to see what Qing Feng was painting and just lay down on the couch and closed his eyes to rest. He was indeed very tired lately. The celebration was finally successfully completed and there were news of pirate ravaging in the East Sea. Only the east of Qiong Yue was facing the sea and not only area was not wide, there was so many years of peace. Thus Qiong Yue’s navy was not strong. With the current issue of the pirates coming to shore to plunder the citizens, it really gave him a headache.
So fast? Only half a shichen (1 shichen = 2 hours) had just passed. Yan Hong Tian open his eyes to looked over and he saw Qing Feng placing the brush away to wash with a proud smiling face. But Xiao Yu, who was standing beside her wanted to laugh but did not laugh expression. That made Yan Hong Tian a little curious and he got up to walk over.
Taking a glance at the painting on the stone table, Yan Hong Tian’s face immediately turned black. She actually painted… Him?
On the plain white paper, there was only a roughly sketched chair and he was laying on it just like that. Unlike the previous painting of the grand landscape kind of style, this painting was paled in comparison. The him in the painted had both eyes shut and brows furrowed with the entire body filled with… Exhaustion. It was indeed beneath of a monarch. Yan Hong Tian’s originally sullen heart tightened, he just now actually unabashedly showed his tiredness? Was it that he was this careless or was it her who could read him?
Seeing his brows wrinkled and his dark eyes dulled, even though she did not know what he was thinking about, she knew that his mood was definitely unpleasant. Qing Feng picked the painting up so that Yan Hong Tian would not be able to tear it up and smiled unsparingly, “Didn’t the Emperor said ‘Draw Zhen a painting’, so Chenqie drew a painting of you.”
Qing Feng’s sentence was a fun provocation, interrupting Yan Hong Tian’s cold mood. Yan Hong Tian’s brows raised slightly, this became his fault? After so many days of not sparing, he had forgotten about her craftiness.
“Play another round?”
Her hand was empty and Yan Hong Tian had already folded the painting up and place it into his sleeve. Qing Feng took her hand back indifferently and shook her head nimbly, “No more. It is obvious that that it is beyond one’s capability so one should not force it.” She had did her best just now but still lost so if they still played then it would be frustrating.
“So you know this rationale.” The deep voice was as if it was saying casually but Qing Feng’s heart still shivered uncontrollably, what was the meaning of that sentence? Looking at Yan Hong Tian’s face, he was still putting on that inscrutable face, so that words was a warning or was it said casually? As she was unable to guess in temporarily, Qing Feng thought and pretended to laugh easily, “One should always try out if it is within one’s capabilities.”
“Oh really?” Yan Hong Tian was laughing like he was quite satisfied with her answer. But before waiting for her answer, he strode out of the pavilion leaving Qing Feng stiffen at her original position. Did he… Found out about anything? Why… Did he bring her to this residence?
As there was countless number of questions in her heart, Qing Feng only ate a few mouths but Yan Hong Tian’s appetite was very good. After both of them finished their dinner, the skies had darken and both of them walked on the long winding trail for a long time before reaching in front of a wooden hut. The wooden hut was much larger than those before and even though it was constructed by wood, it was still simple. Qing Feng entered the courtyard and her attention immediately went to the large plum blossom forest.
It was currently the start of winter and the plum blossoms were not open yet. In the darkness of the night, one can only see the tall branches growing insolently while ignoring the wind temperament.
“It is such a pity that the plum blossoms have yet to open.” Hao Yue is a small country and also had a warmer climate. In an entire winter, one can only see about two or three plum blossom tree blooming and would not be able to see the petals falling like snowflakes. How would anyone not feel disappointed. The plum blossoms in front was very different. Even though it had yet to bloom, that strong thick branches seemed to recount its urgent wait for the snow fall. Breathing in deeply, Qing Feng’s heart rate increases just thinking about the bright red colour against the snow.
Qing Feng stared at the plum blossom forest till her eyes start to heat up until Yan Hong Tian, who was numb to the plum scene, could not help but to give it a few more glances. The plum blossom forest was a sheet of darkness under the moonlight and the shadows of the trees and branches were crossing one another. There was a bit of desolation which was also considered a different style. The night breeze began to blow but she did not have any intention of going into the house. Yan Hong Tian did not urge her and only lightly said, “It would eventually open.”
“That’s true. Unfortunately I have no fate with them this year.” The blooming season should be when she would give birth.
That disappointment and desolate was like she had missed a rare treasure. Yan Hong Tian smiled, it was only a plum blossom forest, “If you really like it this much then during the blooming season next year, Zhen would allow you to come here again to view the flowers.”
Next year? Every year was similar for flowers but each year was different for people. Who knows what would the scene be next year? Who will be the person that would be standing here listening to the wind and appreciating the snow? But Yan Hong Tian would not understand. When one have to much, one would not be able to feel what was precious. Wasn’t that another form of lamentable?
Yan Hong Tian naturally do not know that Qing Feng was disagreeing with him in her heart as her and his mood was good as he looked at the scenery of the plum blossoms forest that he had long grow tired with.
“What is the Emperor’s mood today?”
After one night of not eating much, she finally willing to say it? Yan Hong Tian’s expressions was fixed as he spoke, “It is not bad. Is there anything you want to say to Zhen?”
Qing Feng finally turned around and the night breeze made her dress flutter. Yan Hong Tian frowned, her stomach had become so big but why was her body still so thin?
“Don’t know if it should be spoken or not.” Qing Feng felt a little indescribable. Just now she was filled with smiles, how was it in just a moment a cold look was on that face?
After that she walk to the bamboo chair in front of the wooden hut to sit down and Yan Hong Tian exclaimed, “You finally know when to be afraid? Speak, Zhen will grant you not guilty.”
Not guilty? Was it truly possible to not be guilty? It was said that a monarch would not go back on his words, so should she take this opportunity to tell him about Chen Zhen and that child? Under Yan Hong Tian’s watchful eyes, her heart considered it very long but the words that she spoke became another sentence, “Chenqie was only thinking if ‘he’ is a boy or a girl.”
At that moment just now, she was actually afraid? Afraid that once she spoke, that pair of smiling eyes would be overcast with storms. She was afraid because she was worried that the child in her stomach would be hurt right? It should be. That… Should not be spoken yet, at least until the child was born.
Even though he knew that this was not what she wanted to say, Yan Hong Tian was not anxious and followed along with her words and asked, “So do you want to give birth to a Prince or Princess?”
“For me…” Her hand landed on the chubby stomach. Thinking of the tossing and turning that this child had made for the past months, Qing Feng smiled, “Want to have a son.” If it was a daughter who was this naughty, what will she do.
“Oh?” He also hoped that this birth of hers would be a son, so why was his heart a little disappointed.
Her thoughts were on the unborn baby thus Qing Feng did not felt that look from Yan Hong Tian’s eyes and said, “A daughter is a cloud in heavens and must be brought up with care and coddling so as to retain her softness and radiance. A son is like the mountains and rivers on earth and must be honed so that he would overlook the world. So…”
So? So what?
“So a daughter need to be raise delicately and a son can be raised more roughly.” Anyway, Chen Zhen had already given birth to a son, so even if she did not give birth to one, it would not matter. She also like a daughter but she felt that it would be much easier to discipline a son. If it did not work, one can scold or beat but for a daughter, she would not bear to do so.
Was she joking? Qing Feng’s face was seriously and after Yan Hong Tian was stunned for a moment, he could not help but laughed out loudly.
“Ha ha ha…” A loud hearty laugh swept away the haze and also startled the Xiao Yu who was preparing hot tea and the Ming brothers in the house. What matter was worthy to make the Emperor laugh like this?
The night breeze was still blowing and it was a seemingly quiet night but no one noticed that there was a few agile black clad figures who were in the plum blossoms forest were observing them for a long time. Another night breeze blew which shook the leaves and the black figures quickly disappear in the darkness of the night.